Page:Hopkinson Smith--armchair at the inn.djvu/289

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landlord as he looked me over. This clinched my suspicions. I was in for a scrap and a lively one. If there were two of them, I’d give them both barrels straight from the shoulder; if there were three or more, I’d fight my way out with a chair, as I had done at Perugia.

“With this I came to a sudden halt and moved to the middle of the room. There I stood, straining my eyes in the dim light, hoping to find something with which to brain the gang should they come in a bunch. I took hold of the bed and shook it—the posts and back were as solid as a cart body. The chest was worse—neither of them could be whirled around my head as a club, as I had used the chair at Perugia. Next I tried the door, and found it without lock or bolt—in fact it swung open as noiselessly and easily as if it had been greased. The toy pitcher and basin came next—too small even to throw at a cat. It was a case, then, of bare fists and the devil take the hindmost.

“With this clear in my mind, I laid the pitcher on the floor within an inch of the door, so that the edge would strike it if opened, and again raised the window high enough for me to jump through. I could, of course, have dragged the